A Medical Blog

May 13, 2008 -

John Heald

I have just spent the last three hours pretty much naked, in a small room while a lady applied lashings of warm lubricating jelly to most of my soft underbelly

I know what you are thinking and I am afraid I am not at Edie’s House of Pleasure, unfortunately this was an ultrasound test and part of my medical.

All crew members require a medical not only to make sure that we are all well and it is of course also a US Coast Guard requirement and no crew member can join the vessel without a current medical evaluation.

I hate doctors…………..nothing personal blogger Doc s but I have always had a morbid fear of anything medical and today all those fears were realized up close and very personal.

I have been pricked, pumped up, bent double and asked a range of questions so personal that my medical man Dr. Ben Dover now knows more about my body than Heidi……..or Alan.

Now I have diabetes and this means even more tests to check my sugar level and this means peeing in a plastic cup…………………I hate this ……………I hate the way most of it goes over my hand and that I have to then take the pee cup to the nurse who makes sure there is enough in there by holding it up for all to see as though she has just won the NBA championship game and is holding up her MVP award.

Now, I understand that insurance companies need to see how you are before they insure you but I think that’s unfair………..insurance is all about risk and me having to undergo total humiliation before they write the policy is rather like me asking to see the dealers cards before I decide to play or fold.

Before I continue I should warn some of you that the following contains graphic accounts of today’s medical and I cannot be held responsible for the need of new keyboards as the old ones will be covered in vomit.

Each crew member has a whole list of things that need to be checked and obviously some are different for women compared to the men. For me, one of the strangest was the testing of my reflexes by Doctor Ben cuddling my testi……my ba…………my you know whats and then telling me to cough.

Now, when a 200 pound man with a beard and a lisp has your Albert Halll’s in his hand
your natural instinct is not to cough but to punch the bugger on the nose…………………..I asked him why this needed to be done and he told me it was to test my reflexes …………. now just having him in the current position made my fist clench up which is a pretty good reflex and I wondered why he couldn’t do this the old fashioned way by me crossing my legs and having the Doc bash me about with a baseball bat……………..compared to my current position that would have been luxury but as it was I coughed …………… twice ……………he looked down and as he let go of my friends and scribbled something on the medical sheet he had know idea how lucky he was not to be eating through a straw for the next few weeks.

Then it was time to check my blood pressure and for this I was handed over to a nurse. It is of course every boy’s fantasy to have an Uma Thurman type dressed in their short nurses uniform and as I entered another room I was met by nurse…………………Brian.

Nice guy as Brian was the one hope that something good would come out of today
evaporated and as he took my blood pressure instead of having Uma the nurse intentionally drop her thermometer and bend down to pick it up I had Brian ………..talking to me about how excited he was about the fishing season starting again.

My blood pressure was good with the bottom line thingy a bit high but within normal parameters and the top one perfect. I left Brian to go back to the waiting room for the final set of experiments to begin.

And of course………….you know what’s coming.

Dr Ben Dover sticks his whole head in my bottom……well that’s what it feels like. “Aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaargh,” I normally say followed by swear words in both Italian and Dutch and until he comes out again to explain that it was only his finger. …………next time I am going in with a tattoo on my bottom that reads “exit only.”

Then the final humiliation. Let me start by saying that surgeries scales are always set to over-read.

I know I weigh 285 pounds on any scale so why is that when I go in for my medical I weigh the same as a Lexus. Then Dr.Dover tells me I am 60 pounds over weight…………..I know that…………..it’s my fault I am diabetic …………….. but he told me as though I had no idea and what he was telling me was a revelation………….it wasn’t and although I am mostly in OK shape he is right……………..it’s time……………….more about that later.

The final exam was my eyes as I read his chart which I am sure was the name of a Polish crewmember……………………and then it was over and I sat waiting for the final results to come in by passing the time reading a four year old copy of Men’s Health.

I joke about the medical but of course they are serious things and especially for crew as we have to be fit enough to live at sea and of course be able bodied seamen strong and fit enough to assist guests and ourselves incase of an emergency.

If I had never had my medical two years ago I would not have discovered that I had type 2 diabetes and would have carried on thinking that peeing 27 times an hour was normal.

Well, I had spent four hours with the Doc and everyone else who had been waiting
to see the Doctor had probably died ………………but as he and his rubber glove went boldly where no man has gone before and as I sat reading Men’s Health I have decided it is time. I have no idea why I let myself go the way I did………………..I am not blaming the job……………that would be stupid however it didn’t help that I never gave myself time to eat properly and after a show I would order midnight room service and eat one or ten BLT’s…….replacing the L with extra B.

I really do not eat that much……………..don’t laugh……………..I really do not……………but what I do eat is probably wrong and as I get to my 43rd year I have decided that if I don’t do something now I may never do bugger all about it.

Therefore, I proudly announce that from June 1st 2008 I will start my campaign to loose 60 pounds by January 1st 2009. This is not going to be easy……………on June 2nd I board the Carnival Splendor and this will mean odd eating times and the temptation of both Italian and shipboard delights. However, when I put my mind to something I really do my best to make sure I succeed and to help me with this I make you this promise.

For every pound I loose I will donate $50 to the Great Orman Street Children’s hospital in London which saves the lives of children around the world each and every day as they did for someone very close to me and my family……………I hope to lose 60 pounds ……… and hand over $3000.

There are many diets out there and I am sure many are excellent. I am not going to go crazy and start the Supermodel diet of just eating tissue paper and air………….I have to do this my way by taking regular exercise and eating no potatoes, pasta or sauces and only good carbs. I am going to see a nutritionist who will give me a specific diet to help me and that will take my diabetes thingy into consideration.

So, there you have it……………..I know I can count on Heidi whom without I would not be able to even consider doing this and I also know that you will all support me as well.

Overall, Doctor Ben Dover says I am doing well and surprisingly my cholesterol is normal with a score of 3………………………the results of me smeared with the warm lubricating jelly for the scan I mentioned at the start of today’s blog are in and the good news is………………I’m not pregnant.

June the 1st it is then……………………….I want to be Carnival’s biggest loser.

Goodnight

Your Friends

John and Heidi

Hi, I’m John, and this is my blog. So please don’t mistake my opinions — or those of my dear friends, fans or commenters — for those of Carnival Cruise Line or Carnival Corporation. My apologies in advance for anything I may say that upsets you, but this disclaimer covers Carnival and puts the blame directly on me………….. bugger.